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Thread: The Color of Life is Crimson

  1. #1

    Default The Color of Life is Crimson

    Been meaning to write Silithus a re-entry post ever since I started playing him again, to bridge the gap between his previous Stories and the current ones. Enjoy!
    http://fc09.deviantart.net/fs71/f/20...rr-d6ywsw6.jpg

    The Color of Life is Crimson:Part 1 - 'Waking'
    All that was, was a dream. Silithus couldn't tell how long he had been dreaming, but it felt like an eternity. Time dilates or contracts, flows or stops according to the whims of his dreams and he found himself swimming the sea of emotions and images as easily as he once rode the currents of the sky. It was safe here, comforting. He spent his odd, oscillating time relentlessly building fanciful landscapes and unimaginable enemies with which to do battle with; nothing brought the Ancient crimson dragon more pleasure than the thrill of the hunt. Well, almost nothing - somewhere behind his antics he knew something was missing. The dreams were invigorating yes, but the people and the places he found were all shades constructed to appease him. Why was this dream lasting so long? He felt as if he should wake up, but couldn't. The closer he got to the world of reality, the more painful and grotesque his dreams became. They became hideous nightmares, a wall of black choking off his path to wakefulness. He knew there was something wrong, but in the haze of the dream world it was so difficult to focus his mind. This time it was different though. A voice was echoing across the dream-scape he inhabited and no matter what he built to wall it off the voice still reached him. At first he resisted it, because it wanted him to perform the painful and exhausting task of assembling the fragmented pieces of his consciousness. The voice didn't seem to actually articulate words so much as it was a swirl of intent and images, pleading and beckoning him to do something. To wake up..

    TheRestingPlace.jpg

    Deep within the Eastern Deadlands, something stirred. Usually in a place like the Deadlands that was a bad thing, as the blighted landscape seethed with creatures straight from nightmare. This creature was however, very much alive and quite different. He was an ancient dragon immense enough to tower over the roving bands of creatures nearby, with scales colored crimson and spotted with emerald that almost glowed in the emerald twilight of the blight-fires that the Aegis stirred for light. Azure blue eyes slowly opened, the serpentine pupils wide at first and sensitive to even the dimmest light - which hadn't seen light in what felt to the dragon like an eternity. Testing first his right wing and then his left, he stretched his impressive wingspan to its full length and reveled in the pleasure of popping wing joints and stiff muscles finally being stretched. He slowly began to rotate his muzzle and examine his surroundings, a bit of alarm beginning to creep into the haze that was his focus. The dead, blighted landscape was enemy territory and he had awoken quite vulnerable within it. A pulsating green light seemed to dance over him, and he realized that he was laying in some sort of contraption - it seemed to make him quite weary and tempted to sleep once again, but he knew that if he did there would be no waking. He tried to reach out into the ether and recall himself to the shrine at which he was bound, but ran into a brick wall of ethereal chains - his soul was bound to the spot it seems, and he would have to escape by other means. As Silithus plotted his escape, what he had originally thought of as just another Skull lying on the ground seemed to come to life - a soft light escaping from the empty eye sockets. The sudden animation of the Skull caught him by surprise, and Sil found himself gawking for a moment.

    "Finally your awake!" The Skull spoke, it's voice a raspy disembodied thing. It seemed to be glaring at him.

    "I.. suppose so." Silithus replied, his voice almost as raspy and difficult to use as the Skull's seemed to be.

    "Good. I was made to wait here until you awoke, in order to.. Guide you. From what I was told, it sounded like you might have some difficulties with memory."

    The Skull was right; his memory seemed just as coming and going as his dreams had been. He couldn't remember how he had ended up in this situation, and he was suspicious of the Skull. Especially since it might be a trick of the Withered Aegis. The Ancient Red dragon lay contemplating his situation for a long moment, and the Skull grew impatient.

    "Look, if you want to get out of this Dream-trap your going to have to listen to me.. There's something nasty your going to have to do. The trap feeds on your life-force, as long as your alive the trap exists. So.. The only option is to kill you."

    The Skull cackled as if this were the punchline of a great joke.

    (To be continued...)
    Lunus Ancient Dragon - 100 Adv. 100 Craft. 100 Lair. 49 CrystalShaper
    Feel free to add me on Facebook: [email protected]
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  2. #2

    Default The Color of Life is Crimson

    The Color of Life is Crimson:Part 2 - 'What Must be Done'

    Silithus looked at the Skull incredulously, one of his ear-fins twitching in response to its cackling.

    “So.. What are you saying? That I should bang my skull against this rock until I’m lifeless, and then I can escape?”

    Sighing, the Skull spoke with the air a parent might have when attempting to explain a simple concept yet again.

    “To put it crudely.. Yes. Although by the measure of the density of your head, I’d say that might take a while. I certainly would be entertained.”

    Narrowing his eyes, the Ancient didn’t seem quite as amused.

    “Then what do you recommend, er.. Whatever you are. Why should I even listen to you?”

    At this the Skull levitated closer to the dragon, just out of reach. As it moved closer Silithus could make out faint runes covering the bulk of the Skull’s surface, what appeared to be etched lines filled with molten mithril and then set to solidify into mystical glyphs. The glyphs seemed oddly familiar, as if he had encountered them before but the swirling mess of his memory seemed to continue to fail him.

    “You should listen because I am the emissary of a.. friend.. of yours whom is also trapped and unable to escape until you do.”

    As vague as the Skull was being, Silithus felt serious doubt as to the validity of the Skull’s claims. He especially didn’t like it’s attitude, or how amused it seemed to be about him becoming lifeless. Despite these misgivings Silithus knew he wasn’t going to be able to escape without help. The trap that surrounded him seemed almost as if it had intent, and viciously attacked him with what felt like spikes running through his mind. Heaving a sigh, the Red dragon regarded the Skull with a look that seemed like it would peel the runes from it’s face.

    “You better not be lying.. fine, I’ll do it. From what I can tell about this trap, your right.”

    He felt the way the trap was drawing energy from him to feed itself, and how the trap seemed to bound to him physically but not spiritually. He wasn’t an expert, but his instincts told him it would starve if his spirit was temporarily released through death.

    “Your one of those lucky gifted ones right? Unable to permanently die anyway? It can’t hurt to at least try.”

    Silithus ignored the Skull and focused inward. Throughout the years of his life he had learned through experience and countless deaths where to find his life-threads. These were the parts of his draconic form that tied his soul to his body, usually at places such as his heart and his mind. One by one he mentally severed the threads, and as he did so it seemed as if his consciousness was beginning to float upward and separate from his body. All the sensations of life seemed to fade away: the feeling of the cold stone on his sturdy belly scales, the stiffness in his muscles and joints, and the acrid air that stained his nostrils. Within a matter of moments his body lay lifeless below him, his soul hovering in the air above. From this vantage point Silithus could make out a lot more detail about himself, the new perspective granting him insight into just how sorry his body looked. It was emaciated; what must have been years of slumber had withered his physical body and yet the gift itself had kept him alive.

    “Ahh perfect. Excellent work. I was thinking I was going to have to drag a spear or something over for you to stab yourself in the eye but this works too.”

    The Skull almost seemed disappointed at the lack of injury. It’s glowing eyes seemed to shift focus, looking from his body to the swirling energy that covered Silithus’ remains. Soon a low howl began to erupt from the black columns and withered vines that made up the physical form of the trap, as if there was a spirit within that was crying out in agony. Within the span of moments the pulsating emerald energy collapsed and the howl fell to silence. Silence that was soon filled with the sounds of creatures that had been alerted by the howl.

    “Quickly! Back to your body! The cursed thing just drew the attention of every dead creature in this forsaken place.”

    Going through much the same process as before, except in reverse, Silithus reattached his spirit to his body. The Sensations came rushing back, almost overwhelming him; he stumbled sideways into one of the pillars as he tried to lift himself. The Skull was right, from nearby he could hear the shrieks of creatures who by the sound of it were out for blood. It took all of his mental discipline from years of hunting to coordinate himself, and as he heaved in a deep breath of air his mind began to clear.

    “I thought I said quickly! They are almost here. I imagine that the Soul Anchor built into the trap is going to take a few minutes to wind down so were going to need to find a place to make a stand until you can call yourself back to the shrine at which you are bound. There is such a place nearby, follow me.”

    The Skull glided through the air to a nearby ravine, where a number of enemies would be forced into a choke-point. It was as sound a plan as any Silithus could think of, as he certainly couldn’t fly with his severely weakened wings. Struggling against the fog that still enveloped his mind, he lumbered forward at a quick gait. Bones splintered beneath his massive talons, the sound of their snapping echoing around him. Soon he was situated with his back to the ravines end and his maw facing the oncoming horde.

    “Alright, here’s the plan. I will try to distract them as long as I can, and you just try to hide back here.”

    The Skull’s plan was a good one, but what it didn’t know was it was dealing with Silithus.

    “I’ve got a better plan.. Just stay out of my way and let me exact some vengeance.”

    Silithus’ tone told the entire story; the Skull decided not to argue, as the dragon’s eyes had a dangerous glint. Soon the first creatures rounded the edge of the ravine’s opening, and Silithus could make out what looked like zombified remnants of the Imperial Army. They wore battered, rusting armor that only just managed to contain their rotting flesh and of which bore the stained remnants of the Imperial crest. Upon seeing Silithus they howled in an unholy manner, lumbering at him with unnatural speed and rage.

    “Ahh crap. Please don’t die.. these things can bind your soul here indefinitely if you do, alright? If you die the Master will never let me go.”

    The Ancient Red didn’t have time to consider the Skull’s words, as his focus was entirely wrapped in the state of the battle. In Silithus’ mind there was no thought; he surrendered himself completely to his instincts, which had seemed to survive his slumber mostly intact. As the first few undead soldiers closed in on him, he lifted his right claw and brought it down upon them both with such force that they crumpled; gore spewed out from beneath the claw, almost as if someone had taken a smithing hammer to a bundle of grapes. Not missing a beat, he brought the same claw up and swept it forward and sending the next few undead soldiers flying backward into the rapidly growing mass of creatures. The next few soldiers were just a bit too quick for the Ancient, and Silithus’ left foreleg soon sprouted a pair of spears. Roaring in some pain, but for the most part just infuriated Silithus brought his maw down and crushed the two soldiers in a vicious bite that nearly split them in half. He swung his head toward the wall of the ravine, releasing them so that they might have a taste of the cold black rock.

    “Hey.. HEY. You should be able to recall to the shrine now. RECALL.”

    The Skull’s voice was shrill and slightly panicked. From his point of view the Dragon was lost in blood-lust, a look of almost pleasure in the dragons expression. Silithus didn’t respond in the slightest, and continued his rampage despite mounting wounds from the swarming creatures. It wasn’t long until the battle drew the attention of a much larger, and much more aggravated member of the Withered Aegis. Lumbering through the pack of undead who had gathered at the entrance to the ravine, a huge abomination came charging at Silithus. Smaller undead soldiers were bowled over or trampled, the creature hardly caring about collateral damage as it’s unending thirst for life drove it into a frenzy. Seeing the creature approaching Silithus let out a snarling roar that shook the rock and sent the levitating Skull flying.

    “Let the feasting begin!” Cried the Abomination in a tone of exultation, closing in on the Ancient dragon.

    Made up of an amalgamation of corpses, it easily stood face to face with Silithus. Multiple attached arms held various implements of death, from rusted cleavers to a massive club. It’s first act as it came close to Silithus however, was to bring the weight of it’s body and its’ momentum to bear against the Ancient. Slamming together, Silithus roared in pain and anger as his body was shoved back into the ravine’s end; the jagged rock carved into his flanks and hindquarters like knives. Feeding off the raw sensation of being injured, the Ancient dragon channeled all of his rage into his fore-claw. The claw began to radiate a dripping, golden light as he drew upon the power of his hoard; the power of dozens of enchanted weapons and armor melting and combining into a blow several orders of magnitude greater than what raw muscle is capable of. Talons dripping in molten gold were thrusted forward, piercing the belly of the Abomination and finding purchase as he gripped the creatures spine.

    “Oh. That’s just.. disgusting. I can’t watch.” Recovering from its’ earlier tumble, the Skulls’ twin eye-orbs suddenly disappearing as a torrential flow of rotting Abomination stomach contents spilled onto the ground and onto Silithus.

    The creature seemed to understand its’ predicament, and brought all of its’ arms downward to strike at Silithus before he could finish his assault. Each blade suddenly seemed to erupt in golden flames and slow considerably as they were brought to bear on the Ancient, the dragons’ Gold Shield shimmering across the crimson scales like gilded fire. Bringing the last of his faded strength to bear, the Ancient closed the claw holding the Abominations spine with enough force to crush the bone to splinters. The resounding snap was almost as loud as the creatures cry of anguish, and with a shove Silithus sent the limp mountain of rotting flesh falling backward into the entrance of the ravine to block the advance of the smaller soldiers.

    “Alright, now I will recall.” The Ancient was grinning and covered in gore and blood. The battle had been cathartic for him, his mind clearing and becoming sound for the most part.

    “Oh thank Nyrevin.. I thought I was going to have to sit here and watch you let these things puke all over you for the rest of the afternoon.”

    The two lights within the Skulls’ eyes winked back into existence, and it flew up to the Ancient and landed on his head. Nearby, the horde of undead were howling angrily and trying to climb over the Abominations corpse.

    “I guess it’s back to Dralk.. I wonder how much I have missed.” He shifted back onto his haunches, freeing his foreclaws for the careful manipulation of energy that was required to draw him back to the shrine he was bound to. Within moments both dragon and Skull seemed to disappear, leaving a swirling tendril of hazy purple energy behind. Nearby, a robed and hooded figure watched them depart. It had been watching the entire time, a smile on it’s rotting face.
    Last edited by Silithus Zerr; December 23rd, 2013 at 04:19 PM.
    Lunus Ancient Dragon - 100 Adv. 100 Craft. 100 Lair. 49 CrystalShaper
    Feel free to add me on Facebook: [email protected]
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

  3. #3

    Default Re: The Color of Life is Crimson

    The Color of Life is Crimson - Part 3: More Questions than Answers

    In Istaria, all ‘Gifted’ had the ability to bind themselves to places of power and return to such places in a blink of an eye. It was this very same ability that Silithus had used, and now he drifted in the warm darkness between all things as he awaited his arrival in the draconic city of Dralk. He had always drawn comfort from the inky nothingness, a place where there were no distractions and his mind and body could rest. Wings outstretched, Silithus felt welcomed the light ahead; it meant he was coming home.

    Dralk was a place where every shade of crimson found a place. The city itself stood in the center of a large crater, or more accurately ‘floated’ above the crater. Dragon’s were fond of constructing monolithic hovering structures powered by the enormous crystals they could excavate, riddled with holes and caverns for the flight prone creatures to make use of when travelling between structures. Erupting from the pit below the central floating structure were magma pools that had been uncapped when the dragons first raised the mass of rock into the sky. The rough, mountainous and ash covered landscape surrounding the main city structure was riddled with holes carved into the rock by enterprising lair-shapers looking to build a home. Near the center of the city stood the Dralk shrine, a towering growth of crimson crystal that stood at the center of a bubbling volcanic fountain. It was easily as tall if not taller than most of the ancient dragons who came to visit it and stood as hub and meeting place for the city itself.

    “So this is the fabled capital city of the Lunus faction, eh?”

    The skull’s voice was the first thing Silithus heard, the tone appreciative.

    “Aye, the home of my faction among dragon kind. I always favored old Malganival’s teachings over Helian, but in the end I’ve come to appreciate them both.”

    As Silithus spoke, he carefully cleaned himself in the fountain at the base of the crystalline shrine; wounds stitched together slowly and the filth he had become covered in melted away as the golden aura of primal magic nurtured his body. He stretched crimson and emerald spotted wings to each side experimentally, flexing muscles and digits. Looking at his fore-claws he inspected the carefully crafted crimson crystalline coverings for damage; apparently he had been still wearing his battle gear when he first became trapped in the Deadlands. Finding them sound, his azure blue eyes roved the landscape around him out of curiosity.

    “I wonder how long I was out.”

    His tone was calm, but something in his eyes hinted at alarm. His scaled eye-ridges furrowed in a frown, he returned his gaze to the Skull for an answer.

    “Eh.. It may have been several years. I kind of blanked out after the first few months of waiting for you to wake up.”

    Upon being questioned, the Skull had lifted itself from its former perch upon Silithus’ head and was levitating at eye level. It seemed to be hovering close to him, almost as if attempting to hide from the occasional dragon that passed by.

    “Years.. The last thing I remember, I was battling the elf. Kael.. something. He tried to perform some sort of spell and when I interrupted him there was a bright flash of light..”

    Now looking distraught upon realizing so much time had passed, the Ancient tried to recount the hazy details of his last memories before slumber. A pang of sorrow clenched within his scaled chest as he realized that those he had cared about had had to endure years of his absence with little to no explanation for his disappearance.

    “Well.. look on the bright side! At least we’re not dead! Well.. For me, a second time.”

    The Skull hung its’ jaw open and angled itself mid-air in an attempt to look comical. Silithus huffed a puff of hot air, sending the floating cranium spinning.

    “Very funny.. though you do have a point. Even if I was lost for so long, I’m.. back now. This time thing’s will be different.”

    The coldness and determination in Silithus’ tone was such that he almost gave himself a chill feeling, and he realized he was likely still shaken up over awakening. He felt physically exhausted after his exertion in the deadlands, and decided the best option for now was to rest. Reaching out mentally, he attempted to search for the familiar mental connections of the members of his family. He sensed many threads in the weave of minds that pulsate across the world, but none bore the strong colors and sensations he sought. Clenching his fist and bring it down on the hot stone floor of Dralk, his gauntleted crystal fore-claw made a loud chiming noise as crystal struck stone.

    “Damn that Elf! I will find him if he still breaths.. Find and end him.”

    Silithus’ snarled, utterly uncaring of the looks other dragons were giving him.

    “Ahh boy. Master said he’d be angry, alright.”

    The Skull whispered to itself, inlaid mithril runes gleaming with reflected red light from the hazy ash filled sky.
    Lunus Ancient Dragon - 100 Adv. 100 Craft. 100 Lair. 49 CrystalShaper
    Feel free to add me on Facebook: [email protected]
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]

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